Saturday, February 13, 2016

Starting the Celebration Early


Yes, we celebrate Valentine's Day in this marriage, and when it falls on a weekend, we stretch out the fun. Here is how it all began for us on Friday. 

When Beloved got off work, he told me he had errands to run and was out the door before I could ask if he wanted me to tag along. (apparently not!)

But that was okay because I had my own "to do list" and got busy with it! I dipped strawberries and a banana in chocolate. Beloved's berries were dipped in regular semi-sweet chocolate chips (melted in the microwave) while I used non-dairy chips for mine, hence the line of demarkation on the cookie sheet as they cooled and solidified.

This is what I used for dipping my strawberries. I find it at Sprouts. You can probably find this or something similar at Natural Grocers/Vitamin Cottage and also Whole Foods.  

When I melted the chocolate in the microwave, I first added some olive oil, which made them a really nice creamy-smooth texture for dipping.

As it turned out, Beloved was gone for quite some time, so I set the table with our metallic-threaded beige placemats and special red dishes (from Pier One, purchased years and years ago).  

When Beloved came home he had a dozen red roses in hand. Hmmm!

For dinner we had a pasta dish that tasted great but didn't photograph all that well....

We cleaned up the kitchen and settled onto the couch for a movie Beloved bought at Walmart while out running his errands. "Dinner and a movie" has always been one of our favorite dates, whether out at a restaurant and theater or at home.

I had never heard of this movie before but it was good! It was romantic and had a wonderful story of faith. I highly recommend it.

Everything you see here is both gluten-free and dairy-free

Half-way through the movie we put it on 'pause' so we could dish up dessert. In addition to the strawberries and bananas, we also had  a cookie bar I had made the night before: No Bake Peanut Butter Brownie Bars (from Chocolate Covered Katie, recipe here). 

photo from Chocolate Covered Katie
Note: mine look a little different from hers. I used almond butter instead of peanut butter, and I accidentally rearranged the order of ingredients while preparing them. But the end result tastes the same and they were a hit with us.

Romance is fun, it never gets old, and now that our nest is empty, we can enjoy it even more, Valentine's Day weekend, included!


  1. Oh how neat! Sounds as if it was the perfect kick off to a great weekend.

  2. This made me smile for sure!! Never too old to enjoy a little romancing and it is so much easier when "the nest is empty." And, it does get there quicker than we'd ever expect doesn't it. Enjoy the rest of your Valentine's weekend!

  3. Everything sounds plumb luverly.

    We are not empty-nesters yet, but our girls are adults so we have plenty of time where we feel that empty-nest feeling. It's nice when we know we have kept up with our marriage and can enjoy life to the fullest! <3

    Gosh, I noticed the blog below. I'm so sorry. One thing I do is let my husband read things I'm not sure about, and in that way I can say..."Jem read it and thought it to be fine."

    We used to speak at a homeschool group and I once made an innocent suggestion publicly. I had let Jem read it first to make sure it sounded okay. Thank God I did, because there were some who did (do) not like our stance, much like those who do not like Ted Cruz for the same reasons. Those same women chose to attack for no apparent reasons; only assumptions and lies, and Jem was able to get online to let them know a few things, and that he had read the suggestion first and thought it a good one. It worked beautifully because he read it first and proved a point in the process.

    Even now on my blog, if I mention certain things, I let Jem read it first to make sure it's fine and usually he will even say, "They probably need to hear it!" (Not that those particular people read my blog, but it's always something to think about, we never know).

    I thought your story was sweet by the way, and totally received the sweet spirit behind it. : )

  4. Beautiful my friend...thank you for the many smiles...Blessings and Happy Valentines Day to you.

  5. It is nice to have the entire weekend to celebrate! Have fun!